Minneapolis’ efforts to woo market-rate housing to the city’s North Side may finally be paying off.
Local developer Sherman Associates submitted the sole proposal for a 2.1-acre empty lot on W. Broadway that is now owned by the city, along the avenue’s distinctive curve at Ilion Avenue. The evolving project is expected to feature traditional apartments, walk-up apartments and townhouses.
While most of the units will be restricted to low-income renters, the project also is notable for the presence of units that aren’t restricted. That’s in contrast to nearly all new apartment units rising on the North Side, which have income restrictions because of public subsidies.
Brent Webb, project manager for Sherman Associates, said 13 of the apartments and all 16 townhouses are expected to be market rate — with potential rents of about $1,350 a month for a two-plus-bedroom townhouse. The majority of the remaining units will be limited to people who make 50 percent of the area median income, with lower rents.
“This is significant in that the proposal came in recognizing the need for some unrestricted units,” said Tiffany Glasper, the city’s senior project coordinator for residential finance. “So I didn’t have to spend any time convincing this developer that that was necessary.”
Glasper said the project is also unique because it incorporates three styles of housing. “I have not seen that before,” she said.
Webb said that Sherman is seeking affordable-housing funding from the city and that it plans to apply for low-income tax credits. The developer has not decided whether to also pursue tax-increment financing.
The presence of unrestricted units was more a reflection of George Sherman, principal of Sherman Associates, than specific changes in the market, Webb said.
“He’s been developing in north Minneapolis since the late ’70s,” Webb said. “So he has a commitment to this area and he just thinks that this adds to the vitality.”
Glasper said she hopes that construction will begin by spring 2017.
Other multiunit projects moving forward or completed on West Broadway that are all income-restricted include Broadway Flats at Penn Avenue (103 units) and West Broadway Crescent near Logan Avenue (54 units). Also rising on the North Side is Commons at Penn Avenue (45 units).